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16 Best 3D Printing Slicer Software Amazing FDM Domination!!

The process of 3D printing comprises a few essentials. Having a great 3D printer and a well designed 3D model is important, but it is equally important to have a powerful 3D printing slicer.  In case you are new to the field of 3D printing, a 3D printing slicer is a software that provides an interface between the 3D model and the 3D Printer.

The Slicer prepares your 3D model for printing, by generating a G-code which is a programming language understood by the 3D Printer.  Meanwhile, there are several 3D Printing slicer software available in the market, and we have selected sixteen, their features, platforms, and prices for you to choose the best one from our requirements:

In this article we will talk about all the 3D printing slicers we have tried I do not rate them from best to worst, we will try out more slicer software and add them to this article as we try them out.

This article is just to give you a basic understanding, I leave it up to you to choose what slicers you would like to try.

1. Simplify3D – S3D

Simplify3D is the best available 3D Slicer for professionals. The Slicer is compatible with almost all  3D-Printers of the industry. Its key features include high processing speed, a user-friendly interface, and powerful features to edit the complex 3D models. Also, the Slicer allows you to edit raw G-codes with relative ease. While experimenting with different nozzles, you can edit settings like extruders, layers and select from the various infill methods, temperature control and cooling time settings to get the optimal results.

Do you want to learn more about Simplify3D then why not check out this great tutorial, Brilliant guide to getting you started?

Pros:

  • Gives you high-quality 3D printing results
  • Provides multiple options to customize your model/printer settings
  • its robust features allow you to edit and process complex models
  • With a top processing speed

Cons:

  • It’s an expensive option for beginners

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2. Cura

Cura 3D printing slicer softwareWhile we consider S3D being the best “paid” Slicer in the market, Ultimaker’s Cura takes the number 1 spot for the Open Source slicers. Since it’s free to use, Cura has become one of the most widely used 3D slicer software in the world. Also, Cura 3D slicer can process STL, 3MF and OBJ formats which gives it the versatility to work with almost all 3D-Printers in the market.

Pros:

  • Contains a simple interface with a highly customizable dashboard
  • It’s easy to use for experts and beginners alike.
  • Open Source and Free
  • The Slicer provides options to edit, tinker and visualize intricate designs

Cons:

  • Time estimation can show an error of 10-20 minutes

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3. Slic3r 3D printing slicer software

3D printing slicer software Another brilliant Open Source3D slicer on the list is Slic3r. Thanks to the actively contributing community of slic3r developers, professionals today can use many 3D printing features. For instance, the use of brim, micro layering, multiple extruders, bridge detection, command line slicing, subsequent printing, etc. are all examples of the features the Slic3r community developed that. One of its best features is the ability to view the infill patterns of honeycomb structure separately across the layers. This gives the designers the freedom to create unique designs, independent of the other layers of the design.

Pros:

  • Open Source and powerful software with features to edit designs in real-time
  • Can be directly linked to the user’s OctoPrint box
  • Provides the option of real-time incremental slicing

Cons:

  • It’s not suitable for beginners

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4. KISSlicer

“Keep It Simple Slicer”, or KISSlicer is one of the most user-friendly 3d slicers available in the market. You can select the package from the options of free Commercial ($35) and Educational ($25) versions. The free version is suitable for amateurs who want to get hands-on experience with 3D printing. Further, the pro-version provides features like multi-head printing and G-code generation.

Pros:

  • The software provides smart multi-head temp control
  • It allows adjustable printer speeds
  • The Slicer can handle complex meshes

Commercial version Cons:

  • It offers its paid features free by other slicers
  • Generate the G-code for unsupported printers manually

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5. OctoPrint 3D printing slicer software

We consider OctoPrint slicer being the best option in the market for remotely controlling a 3D printing operation. The cloud-based software gives its users the freedom to manage printing via browsers. The application is installed on Raspberry Pi, which can be extended further by using readily available plug-ins. Further, using its cloud-based operation enables you to directly load STL files onto the 3D-Printer without having to use an SD card interface.

Pros:

  • It’s Open Source and Free
  • Contains an Integrated slicer software that is based on the powerful CuraEngine
  • The software gives excellent mobility to the users who can read the G-codes directly from the Printer

Cons:

  • It only supports STL files
  • Not good for beginners

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6. 3DPrinterOS

3DPrinterOSNext up is the 3DPrinterOS cloud-based slicer that gives excellent mobility to its users. Using the Slicer, you can directly access your 3D-Printer from a browser. 3DPrinterOS is an integration of three 3D-Printer slicer apps Cloud Slicer, Slicer 2 and MakerBot Slicer. Like all other slicers, you can choose the one that fits your needs.

Pros:

  • Cloud-based
  • Easy to use
  • Allows you to convert your slicer settings as JSON code

Cons:

  • A lot of features are available on the paid version

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7. Astroprint

AstroprintWhile using Astroprint, you realize that it seems like a hybrid between 3DPrinterOS and OctoPrint. Well, they built it on the OctoPrint platform, so the similarity is natural. The Astrobox interface provides you with the freedom to remotely control the Printer from any browser. Also, the software offers integration of many other 3D printing applications like Yeggi and Thingiverse for searching and downloading pre-designed models.

Pros:

  • User-friendly interface
  • Cloud-based
  • Integrates many useful 3D printing applications

Cons:

  • Limited features
  • Lesser flexibility as compared to its peers

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8. Repetier Slic3r

Repetier 3D printing slicer Repetier is perhaps the most favoured 3D printing slicer option among the RepRap 3D-Printer community. Also, it’s compatible with most of the commercial FDM 3D printers. But its true strength lies in its ability to support up to 16 extruders. They can integrate it with multi-slicer support services like CuraEngine and Slic3r. Also, the Repetier Host offers remote access through the dedicated server. It can also be installed on Raspberry Pi.

Pros:

  • Best choice for RepRap community
  • Cloud-based
  • Free

Cons:

  • Print quality is not that great

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9. CraftWare 3D Slicer

CraftWare 3D SlicerA lot of users say using CraftWare reminds them of the Simplify3D interface. Developed by CraftBot, the Slicer is compatible with all available FDM 3D Printers. Also, its G-code visualizer is powerful and allows you to view the layer-by-layer model. Further, it gives a 360-degree view of the model to you for detailed tinkering.

Pros:

  • User-friendly interface

Cons:

  • Quality is not as great as that of Cura or S3D

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10. IceSL Slicer

3D Printing Slicer Software IceSL Slicer IceSL is a multifunctional software that offers 3D slicing and modelling features under one roof. The powerful software allows you to work with more control over your projects. Also, the layer-by-layer viewing capability of the G-code is an important feature that the slicer software provides.

Pros: 

  • The software gives impressive control to designers
  • It’s free
  • Multiple 3D printing features under one roof

Cons:

  • Not available for MAC
  • Not suitable for beginners

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11. Pathio

Pathio Slicer And last but not least, Pathio. Pathio slicer looks to be bringing a lot of extra features to the slicing software, 3D Offsetting being one just now Pathio is in open beta meaning anyone can try this Slicer out for free to get the community to help beta test. It works on many operating systems Windows, Linux and mac. The team behind the Pathio slicer seems to have gone quiet with no updates on their blog the latest update V0.6.3 Beta 4 was in july 2019, download servers up and down is this project dead? or is it in hibernation? Would you like to learn more about pathio, have a look at the bellow articles?

Pros: 

  • Works on many operating systems
  • Extra features
  • Works with octopi and Duet3D

Cons:

  • Free for beta testing

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12. SelfCAD

SelfCAD Slicer Selfcad is another slicing program that was launched just recently. It has a built-in Slicer that helps you generate the G-Code that you can send to your 3D Printer. With this Slicer, you can access your 3D Printer on the browser easily, and if you can’t see your Printer you can request it to be added, and it will be done quickly. It’s also compatible with any FDM 3D Printers. It’s similar to Cura Slicer, but they improve it. Something exciting and unique about SelfCAD in-built Slicer is the 3D print animation feature. You can animate your sliced object to see how it will be 3D printed. If you would like to design your 3D models and 3D print, SelfCAD is an excellent program as you can model, sculpt, animate and Slice your designs all under one program with none additional software or extension. They have also integrated Myminifactory has also into the program to allow users to import models at a click of a button. Do you need more information on the selfcad slicer? we got you covered

Pros:

  • The easiest Slicing program
  • Suitable for all levels of  users
  • Compatible with all FDM 3D printers
  • More natural to Customize your settings
  • It can handle both simple and complex meshes.
  • It runs on the cloud. Hence you can access it anywhere.
  • You can use the Slicer in the free account.
  • The print quality is perfect, just like for Cura

Cons:

  • You need an internet connection to access the Software

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13. Kirimotokirimoto

Kirimoto is an entirely new slicer written from scratch. It does not use any components from other slicers. Since it is written purely in Javascript, it can run entirely in-browser. Future work may offer server-side slicing for larger and more complex models. It is a multi-modal slicing and visualization engine that produces:

  • GCode for 3D printers
  • Plus GCode for CNC Mills
  • Also GCode, DXG, and SVG paths for laser cutters

Pros:

  • Suitable for all levels of users
  • Compatible with all FDM 3D printers
  • Ideal for CNC and Laser cutters
  • It runs on the cloud so access from anywhere

Cons:

  • You need an internet connection to access the Software

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14. Netfabb Slicer

Netfabb Slicer is another slicer that has worked hard to make it up to the top list of Slicers in the market. It is an ideal tool for handling STL files. The Slicer offers glorious features that allow you to work with your models freely. These features include model optimization and preparation. The Slicer is ideal for metal powder bed fusion and energy deposition process. Therefore, it becomes a perfect solution for professionals and experts. Thus, it is a suitable Slicer for professionals. However, the students can avail of the services free of charges for three years.

Pros:

  • Netfabb Premium, Netfabb Ultimate and Netfabb Simulation variants offer impressive features for the users
  • Students can avail the Slicer for three years for free

Cons:

  • The Slicer does not use a subscription model like other Slicers. Instead, you will have to buy the software at the end of the thirty-day trial period.

15. SliceCrafter

SliceCrafter

SliceCrafter is a very interesting Slicer that is based on IceSL. Thus, Mac users can enjoy using the full features of this Slicer. However, a lot of the amazing features of the IceSL are missing from the Slicer. You cannot edit OpenSCAD code from this Slicer. One of the most interesting features of this Slicer is that you can upload your STL files via a link. This gives you amazing mobility while working on unique systems and preserving your designs. Once again, this Slicer is ideal for experts and advanced level users who like to tweak with the features. Another amazing feature of the Slicer is that it is free of cost.

Pros:

  • Browser-based Slicer that does not require setting up of Slicer prior to use
  • Free of cost
  • STL files can be shared via a link

Cons:

  • Not enough features as available on the IceSL desktop version

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16. MatterControl

MatterControl is a one-stop-shop for all your Slicer related issues. This Slicer enables you to start a model from scratch and work your way to the printing of the model without having to need help from any other software. However, the Printer needs to be connected to the computer for the entire period of the printing. Thus, it is an amazing Slicer that rounds up a lot of the features of good Slicers in the market right now. There is also another option for you to save the G-Code on an SD card and install it in the Printer, then only can you feel free from the computer staying connected to the Printer. A few of the key features of the Slicer include; layer height change, density fill, support material inclusion, and raft. All these features are available with the basic version of the Slicer. However, there are some powerful advanced features of the Slicer that give you superb control over slicing. These features include; auto mesh repair and support for multiple extruders. You can view the entire printing model step by step and how it will develop through the different stages of printing. Also, you can get help from online resources from MatterControl’s support on the MatterHackers website. And on top of it all, if you have a cloud-based account, you can easily move your files around.

Pros:

  • Supports beginners, moderate level users and experts alike
  • They offer the software free of cost, which makes it amazing for beginners
  • Online source library can help you work remotely from any device connected with the internet

Cons:

  • The quality of the Slicer is not as good as compared with other mature level Slicers
  • Quality of print varies with the printers

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Now that you have the 3D printing slicer software for your 3D Printer you will now need to find websites to download stl files this article will guide you through the best websites to download 3D models. And while you are there check out this Brilliant guide to getting you started in 3D printing.

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9 Comments
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  1. Nice article.

  2. Octoprint is not a slicer per say, but it is an excellent 3D printer control software.

    May I suggest you have a look at IdeaMaker, in my opinion it rivals favorably with S3D.
    For example it allows for manual support placement, a feature seldom found in free slicers.

  3. Totally agrees but given the slicer plugins available now and the wonderful features that the software offers, it would be an injustice to NOT categorize it as a Slicer. 🙂

  4. Please add Kiri:Moto (grid.space/kiri) to future slicer roundups

  5. No mention of Voxelslicer? I’d say a close competitor in this field

  6. PrusaSlicer has gotten to be one of the most preferred slicers for a lot of people. It is open source and will support about any modern 3D printer (I am using it with my Qidi Tech X-Plus and works great). I am trying to figure out how/why it got left off this list.

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